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Three Signs A Homeowner Should Be Concerned About Their Electrical Panel

Has The Electrical Panel Gone Haywire?

Electrical panels, or circuit breakers, are one of those integrated home mechanisms that occupants rarely think about until something is wrong. They are there to protect people against electric shock and electrical fires that could happen if too much voltage is sent through a wire. They save lives and homes and therefore are a very important safety feature, but they rarely need maintenance. 

However, if a homeowner sees any of the following signs, they need to have their electrical panel examined by a professional right away.

Lights Fading and Flickering

If a single bulb is flickering or going dim, that lightbulb is likely at the end of its life and ready to burn out. However, if someone turns on appliances like a vacuum cleaner or hairdryer and lights in that part of the house dim or flicker, that may indicate a problem with the circuit breaker. 

Dim and flickering lights can indicate old wiring that cannot handle the amount of voltage needed or that the electrical panel is not performing its duty. Turning on the microwave should not cause the front room lights to flicker or a circuit breaker to trip. Electrical panel repair may need to happen in this case.

Don’t Wait for Fire: Burning Smells


If a homeowner detects the smell of burning plastic or sees scorching around the electrical panel itself, this is an emergency. They should not wait and immediately follow these steps:

  1. Turn off the electrical main, shutting down electricity to the whole house.
  2. Call an electrician.
  3. Communicate the urgency of the situation.
  4. Wait for an assessment by the professional before turning anything back on.
  5. Allow the technician to replace the electrical panel.

While this may not be ideal, neither is the worst-case scenario of a house fire. Calling an electrician is a better option than calling the fire department.

Just How Old Is It?


People often forget how much time has passed since they have had a checkup, either for themselves or parts of their home. Electrical panels tend to last between 25 to 40 years, but age catches up eventually. What may be working today may be a fire hazard tomorrow. Here are a few signs that an electrical panel is showing its age:

  • Rust: If rust appears on the panel, this corrosion can lead to exposed wires and further issues.
  • Fuses, not Switches: If the panel still has fuses that need to be replaced instead of breaker switches, the panel is definitely out of date.
  • Breakers Tripping Often: Do the breakers often need to be reset? This is an indicator that the panel is aging.
  • Breakers Not Resetting: If a person has to try more than once to get a breaker to come back on, it may be time for an electrical panel replacement.

About Korte Does It All.

Korte Does It All has been solving household problems for the residents of Fort Wayne, IN, and the surrounding areas since 1965. They are family-owned and offer 24/7 live answers, meaning someone is always available to answer calls. Call them today for reliable electrical services in Fort Wayne, IN.

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